Bound for the Promised Land (Genesis 50:25) - Radical

Bound for the Promised Land (Genesis 50:25)

“Then Joseph made the sons of Israel swear saying God will surely visit you and you shall carry up my bones from here.”
– Genesis 50:25

Genesis 50:25 is a very interesting verse. It is one  we can quickly gloss over or maybe even just kinda read and kinda wonder how, “Huh, why is it so important, where Joseph’s bones will be once he dies?” The very next verse after this, the last verse in the Book of Genesis says Joseph died and they embalmed him and he was put in a coffin in Egypt, but the picture here in the verse prior to that, Genesis 50:25, is a man who is about to die, but he says to his family, “My ultimate place is not in Egypt, it’s in the Promised Land. My ultimate hope is not in what I’ve seen God do in and through my life here, it’s in his promises to come.”

This Verse Reminds Us that Our Perspective Matters

Everything looks very different when your eyes are fixed, not just on today, but on what will matter ten trillion years from now.

Now obviously this is just merely his physical body, his physical bones, but it is a picture when Joseph says this of faith. He knows that Egypt is not where the people of God are stopping, that yes, they will be there a long time, but God is going to bring them out just as he promised. This is a promise that we have obviously seen all throughout the Book of Genesis. He is leading them to a land, a land flowing with milk and honey, a blessed land, a promised land, and Joseph dies with hope looking to the future, not just looking at the present, and that is a good way to live and die, looking not just to the present, but to the future.

Genesis 50:25 Reminds Us Our Hope Is In Heaven

Our hope is not ultimately in what we see right around us, even up to the point where we die. Our hope is not ultimately in what we see right around us. It is in a future, a future promised land, very different, far greater than what we’re seeing in the Book of Genesis. Our hope is in a new heaven and a new earth that God in his grace and glory is going to make a reality one day and so we are living today with our hopes set on another place, like this transforms the way you live today, when you realize you’re not living ultimately for what’s right around you, you’re living ultimately with a future hope, a hope in God’s promises to come.

That changes the way you live today, because now you’re living not with a temporal perspective, but with an eternal perspective. You’re living for what’s gonna matter, not just today. You’re living for what’s gonna matter, 10 trillion years from now, and that changes what you prioritize today. That changes how you spend your time. It changes how you spend your money. And that changes how you make plans for your life. Everything looks very different when your eyes are fixed not just on today, when your eyes are fixed on what’s gonna matter 10 trillion years from now. You start to live for different priorities and possessions. You start to live with different pursuits.

Genesis 50:25 Leads Us to Pray To Be Heaven Focused

So God we pray, help us to live this way, with our eyes fixed on future hope. Especially as we walk through suffering, keep our eyes fixed on future hope, but not just suffering. As we walk through prosperity, as we look at blessings, good things that you surround us with, God, help us not to put our hope in them. Lord, help us to gladly even forsake many of these things, to live for what’s gonna matter 10 trillion years from now. Help us to forsake treasures on earth, to store up treasures in heaven. Help us to live, not for possessions on Earth but possessions in heaven, not for ultimate pleasure on Earth but ultimate pleasure in heaven, for priorities not that just matter on Earth but priorities that are gonna matter 10 trillion years from now.

Use us to share the Gospel today we pray. Use our time toward that end, introduce people to eternal life in Jesus. God, please may that be so. Please give us boldness to share the gospel today. Open our eyes to the opportunities that are around us. Use us to affect people’s lives for all of eternity today we pray. God, give us an eternal perspective on our lives on this earth and help us to live day by day accordingly. In Jesus’ name we pray.

David Platt serves as pastor at McLean Bible Church in Washington, D.C. He is the founder and chairman of Radical. He is the author of several books, including Radical, Radical Together, Follow Me, Counter Culture, and Something Needs to Change.

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